Cannabis based companies are expanding the market with new therapy discoveries. They are pushing the industry forward through international patent registrations, research and clinical trials on treatments for neurological and inflammatory disorders. While research is welcomed, the patenting of natural compounds is of concern. Is it good news or bad? We look at some of the pharmaceutical companies currently filing patents on cannabis-derived molecules.
PR Newswire reports on some companies in the cannabis sector that recently achieved some breakthroughs including: Vitality Biopharma, Inc. (OTC: VBIO), GW Pharmaceuticals plc (NASDAQ: GWPH), Cannabics Pharmaceuticals Inc. (OTC: CNBX), Cannabis Sativa (OTC: CBDS) and Terra Tech Corp. (OTC: TRTC)
Vitality Biopharma, Inc. (OTCQB: VBIO) committed to developing cannabinoid prodrug pharmaceuticals and discovering the power of cannabinoids in treating inflammatory and neurological disorders, announced the filing of an international PCT (The Patent Cooperation Treaty) application. This is considered as an important milestone reached in the development of a platform for cannabinoid pharmaceuticals.
151 countries worldwide
The Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) is an international patent law treaty, with 151 signatory countries worldwide. It provides a unified procedure for filing patent applications to protect inventions in each of its member states.
The patent filed by Vitality Biopharma includes details previously filed in three different provisional applications in the US. It includes 79 patent claims and close to 200 individual compounds. Glycoside prodrugs and the most abundant cannabinoids, THC and CBD are among the compounds included as well as an array of other phytocannabinoids and endocannabinoids.
Additionally, such compounds as vanilloids, molecules which are believed to target the TRPV1 receptor, and which could potentially provide sustained pain relief and enzymatic biosynthesis, are being patented.
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Global patent coverage for 20 years
PCT worldwide offers patent coverage as close to global as one can get through successful patent prosecution. The original priority date for filing was September 22, 2015 which implies that any underlying patent claims would be extended to 2035 in the US and could be subject to extensions which would add additional years of protection.
Robert Brooke, Chief Executive Officer of Vitality Biopharma said: “The clinical data emerging on the use of cannabinoids for inflammatory bowel disease, opiate addiction, and many other serious disorders is inspiring, and our team is now working internally and through collaborators to develop key therapeutic applications for our compounds.”
Furthermore, Cannabics Pharmaceuticals Inc. (OTC Pink: CNBX) announced the results of their (High Through-put Screening) HTS research. The results conclude specific cannabis extracts, depending on the THC/CBD ratio, directly reduce U87MG glioblastoma cell viability. Results on other types of cancers will be made known by December 2016.
The Cannabics method clearly diagnoses and differentiates between varied plant extracts’ apoptotic and necrotic effects by using the HTS on biopsies from patients shown on scans of “before” during and “after” effects of the treatments as explained by Dr. Eyal Ballan, Chief Scientist of Cannabics Pharmaceuticals Inc.
GW Pharmaceuticals plc (NASDAQ: GWPH), a British biotech company that developed Epidiolex a cannabidiol based medicine has completed Phase 3 clinical trials for the treatment of seizure in Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. Share prices are rising as up to 650,000 shares were traded per day.
Cannabis Sativa’s shares rise
Cannabis Sativa’s (OTCQB: CBDS) shares are rising. The company and its subsidiaries produce and sell herbal based skin products internationally. The range includes Go Deep, a deep healing salve to reduce pain and inflammation in muscles, ligaments, tendons and joints.
Pharma claims it all?
Does this mean that a handful of companies will take the credit and profits for compounds that have been used medicinally for thousands of years by patenting 200 compounds provided by nature? Surely there must be some other way to recover the costs of research?
It seems likely that cannabinoid patents will relate specifically to the concentrations and combinations of compounds found to be effective in treating illnesses, so perhaps it’s not all bad news. At least we will have clearer information on which molecules work for what disorders and how much to use.